Its almost three in the am. I am leaving the laundromat after a long overdue appointment with Mr. Clean. My daughter is playing and not listening.

I grab her. There is something urgent about my message to her.

You have to listen to me. The difference between listening to my words can be life or death.

I get it now. I am working hard on dispelling my disobedience. The difference is life or death.

Right now I am okay with this long run of discipline I have been receiving from God. Discipline from my heavenly Father is the same as a parents discipline. His correction has the difference for me of life and death.

I was on a path headed down a road He never planned for me to trail down. Disobedience is easy. Letting go of pride and thinking I known it all is hard. See God my Father will take the foolish things to confound the wise. There was a straight shot for the Israelites that would have made them avoid the red sea. But God chose the route so that they would avoid war with enemies which may have sent them running back to what God delivered them out of.

That’s why I have been in peace.

I cannot go back. I have seen the light. I am looking at my promised land. When you are in darkness your eyes get adjusted to it so you don’t know you were in the dark until the light comes on.

Yes. I get it. I spent all of 2013 squinting not believing that it could be this sunny and bright. Even in my wilderness. But freedom is hard for some to accept when bondage is all they have known.

So here I am thanking God for his discipline. Thanking God for not allowing my heart to be hardened like Pharoah so He could put a new mindset and create newness within me. I tried to avoid my wilderness but he made everything in my life dry like a desert in order to get me back.

I had always worked many jobs. Before He came for me was the first time I had worked three jobs and had no overflow. I’m like what is going on.

My Father was coming for me. He wanted to prepare me for a rest. He had to correct me on all those paths He pulled me off. I had to be disciplined.

The word says him He loves he disciplines.

Thank you Lord. For love and discipline.

What if I ran from discipline again. What if I tried to take matters into my own hands without asking God what He wants from my life. Is the difference really life or death?

I was dead emotionally, spiritually and with all the weight I was packing around my mid section I surely wasn’t living. I was just getting by.

“This morning. I woke up. Feeling brand new. I jumped up. Feeling my highs and my lows in my soul and my goals. Just to stop smoking stop drinking like I been thinking I got my reasons just to get by. Just to get by. Just to get by. Just to get by.”

Yes Talib Kweli said it best.

It was December 2012. My daughter asked me to stop smoking. She was only two. I knew it was God using her. So I did. I used a patch for three days and like that my thirteen year on and off stint with tobacco had ended. I’m still smoke free today.

I had to be better. For me. For my daughter. Who could I trust to raise her? Yes. I began doing insanity with such fervor one would have thought I lost my mind.

Well since the old one wasn’t worth keeping hold of. I am thankful I lost that one so God could renew a right mind within me.

This time I walked into my discipline. I didn’t try to make a way out of it. No escape plans to man down what God wanted to build up within me. It was time to walk. To the beat of the drummer within me that no one else can seem to hear but keeps me floating and feet a tapping.

I’m doing my moonwalk. Gliding like the singer I was never allowed to listen to because they said listening to a disfellowshipped person singing was like talking to him. I mean really? Why did MAN decide to change the bible? I get the eating part. Bad company corrupts good character. Or bad association spoils useful habits. Let’s not get loss in translation. Let Gods word speak but where does it say in the bible not to even greet your sister or brother? I been reading. I have yet to find. All I keep on reading about is love. Continuous unfailing love. I thought courteousness might have been a part of that.

But I understand. See I was bent on a destructive mindset because when darkness tells you to avoid the light you know you don’t want to be a part of the darkness for some strange reason yet you are afraid of the light.

God has not given us a spirit of fear. But of POWER, LOVE and a SOUND MIND.

There is a great enemy that wants to take all that away. So you mean I can have enough of the power that God has given me to stop living a sinful lifestyle? To stop smoking? To stop giving into the desires of my flesh? To not curse someone out who so desperately needs it? What?

Freedom is attainable? Yet I am bound by the limitations of the orders of MAN to prevent me from accessing it.

Sounds like slavery to me. The enslavement of greatness, destiny, and purpose.

I had to break my chains. When I stopped leaning on Man I opened my ears to hear God.

Go ahead. He speaks. He may just use a few people to repeat the same things that none of them knew the other was saying. God doesn’t work in mysterious ways. He is God. He is bold enough to just work.

If you let Him.

So I stand in my state of discipline. When God disciplines it is much different from the way I watched man do it. He doesn’t humiliate. He takes one to the side like a loving parent who doesn’t want a child to be tarnished by the pain of humiliation and shame. He does it in love and harmony. He does it for life. For that life or death situation. He does it so we can choose life.

We keep getting the same test until we pass it. So the question should be, what am I supposed to be learning? The answer will come if you open up your mind and heart and not lean on your own understanding, acknowledge God. He will direct you. So take that new direction and run to the place He is leading you.

The difference really can be life or death.


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